ARTICLES

OVERZEALOUS ALKALOIDS OF BOXWOOD!

by Dominique Richard © 2015

Boxwood – Buxus Sempervirens (young shoots)

News Flash! All Boxwood species, in their entirety, produce over 200 alkaloids! Buxus Sempervirens alone produces at least 75 of the 200, of which over 50 are produced in the young shoots.

Why are these facts newsworthy? Because they present evidence that nature provides us with compounds to relieve human suffering. While plants produce alkaloids to protect themselves against herbivore invasion, Buxus Sempervirens is seriously overzealous in its production! Talk about overkill!

Why would any plant produce so many alkaloids? Why else than it is for our benefit; nature providing us with what we need to survive and thrive, once again. The primary use of alkaloids is medicinal. Alkaloids are very important components of medicine.

Alkaloids general pharmacological activities include: adenosine receptor antagonist, analgesic, anesthetic, antiarrhythmia, antiasthma, antibacterial, anticancer, anticholinergic, antifungal, antimalarial, antimicrobial, antiprotozoal, antipyretic, anti-rheumatism, antitubercular, antitumor, antiviral, cholinomimetic, cough suppressant, cytotoxic, hypotensive, muscle relaxant, nervous depression, psychedelic, stimulant, and vasodilator. They are 22 alkaloids that contribute to the anticholinesterase (AChE) activity in Boxwood – Buxus Sempervirens (young shoots) very effective against neurodegeneration.

The more nature is researched and studied, the more it becomes evident of its medicinal importance. This endeavor, however, is not for the faint of heart! There are hundreds of thousands of compounds that nature produces. Time and dedication are required to learn this vast phytochemistry that nature produces. An in-depth knowledge of medicine, when combined with an extensive study of phytochemistry, results in a more proficient understanding of health problems and their root causes, essential for homeostasis.

This question bears repeating: why would any plant produce that many alkaloids? The answer is found within the chemical composition of the plant itself! It is a confirmation that nature is the superior chemist and holds the promises and answers that we are currently trying to synthetically mimic. This natural approach is the most compatible with human biological systems.